WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (Sept. 3, 2013) - The Chicago White Sox have announced the promotions of four Winston-Salem Dash alumni. Catcher Miguel Gonzalez, right-hander Erik Johnson, infielder Marcus Semien and right-hander Daniel Webb will suit up in Major League Baseball for the first time tonight.
Thanks to these September call-ups, Winston-Salem has sent 20 players to the big leagues during the Dash era (2009-present), and eight of them have earned their first career MLB promotions during the 2013 season. In addition to this new quartet, catcher Josh Phegley and hurlers Charlie Leesman, Jake Petricka and Andre Rienzo have debuted for the White Sox after playing in the Triad at some point along their minor league journey.
Gonzalez hit .254 with two homers and 20 RBIs between Double-A Birmingham and Triple-A Charlotte this season. He posted a .247 average in 50 games with Winston-Salem in 2012. The Dominican Republic native is known for his defense behind the plate, and he has thrown out 37 percent (20-of-54) of would-be base stealers this season after gunning down 52 percent (22-of-42) a year ago with the Dash.
Johnson, the White Sox second-round pick in 2011, went 12-3 with a 1.96 earned run average in 24 starts between Birmingham and Charlotte. Among hurlers with at least 100 innings, Johnson's ERA in fifth-lowest in Minor League Baseball. While with Winston-Salem in 2012, Johnson boasted a 2.74 ERA in eight starts, and he was the ace of the staff during the club's push to the Mills Cup Championship Series. The Mountain View, Calif., native has been among the top five White Sox prospects per multiple outlets since joining the organization in 2011.
Semien, Johnson's college teammate at California, combined to hit .284 with 19 homers and 66 RBIs in Double-A and Triple-A while spending time at second base, shortstop and third base. He was also named the Southern League's Most Valuable Player on Tuesday. Semien spent the entire 2012 campaign in the Carolina League and hit .273 with 14 long balls and 59 RBIs in 107 games with the Dash.
Webb became the fourth player in Dash history to play in Winston-Salem and reach The Show in the same season, joining fellow hurlers Daniel Hudson, Addison Reed and Chris Sale. The Paducah, Ky., native did not allow an earned run in eight appearances with the Dash to begin 2013. He then made 13 appearances with Birmingham and 21 efforts for Charlotte. Overall this season, Webb was 2-1 with a 1.87 ERA in 42 minor league outings.
Gonzalez, Johnson, Semien and Webb will be in uniform for the White Sox when the club continues its series with the Yankees in New York at 7:05 p.m. EDT Tuesday. Of the 31 active players on Chicago's roster, 14 of them played for the Dash during their minor league career.
The Dash will open their fifth season at BB&T Ballpark in April of 2014. Winston-Salem's 2014 schedule will be announced sometime this fall. For season ticket information, call the Dash at (336) 714-2287 or visit wsdash.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.